Rosie O'Donnell on Talk Show Comeback: 'We're Not Going To Look For Controversy'

OWN’s The Rosie Show will not be a retread of The Rosie O’Donnell Show. That’s the message Rosie O’Donnell drove home to reporters at the Television Critics Association summer press tour in Beverly Hills on Friday.

“It’s going to be different,” O’Donnell said of her new five-times-a-week program, which will debut on Oprah Winfrey’s OWN network on Monday, October 10 at 7/6c. One big change: She won’t be fawning over A-listers like Barbra Streisand and Tom Cruise. “I’m 50, and both of those people have stayed in my house… My enthusiasm for celebrities has changed and evolved.”

That said, her new gabfest — which she describes as a hybrid reality/talk/variety show — will feature one celeb guest per episode, provided “they have something to talk about and want to come play.” Other regular features will include an opening monologue, audience segments and “a fun game.”

O’Donnell — who likened landing a show on Winfrey’s fledgling network “to being knighted in a way” — will also tackle current events, but don’t expect any screaming matches à la The View. “As things come up in life and in the world [we’ll address them],” she said. “We’re not going to look for controversy.”

Unlike her new boss, O’Donnell confessed, “I am not aspirational. I’m inspirational in that the people at home can relate to me.” And how are they similar? “We both have an insatiable curiosity for the nature of human existence.”

O’Donnell’s dream Week 1 guests include comedian Russell Brand and recording artist Adele.

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40 Comments
  1. David F says:

    I hope we will still see her support of Broadway and musical theatre! Loved seeing some of Broadway’s best perform on Rosie’s old show.

    • Sivat says:

      I can’t wait..I love Rosie!

    • D says:

      I forgot that she occasionally had Broadway performances on her old show…loved that! You just don’t see that on television–well, except for the few times that America’s Got Talent slips them in during results shows.

      I’m kind of disappointed that it won’t be like her old show. I can understand not wanting to crazy over celebrities, but I *liked* her old show–much more than Ellen’s show, in fact. Perhaps she’ll compromise and do a revitalized version of her old show?

    • Yes, Broadway showcases would be a great addition to The Rosie Show.

  2. Justin says:

    I love her, and I really hope this show does well. She’s one of my favs and I can’t wait to see her again on a daily basis. Very much looking forward to this.

  3. Trista says:

    She doesn’t have to court controversy – she just won’t have anyone on that doesn’t meet her liberal standards.

    I have not been a fan since she railed at Tom Selleck for being a member of the NRA.

    just one humble opinion.

  4. wanda says:

    Some people should just stay retired. Use to love then she became very obnoxious. Won’t be watching.

    • Sivat says:

      Then why’d ya feel the need to respond? Zip it, sister.

      • Matt Webb Mitovich says:

        Everyone, please stay on topic and no personal attacks. Thank you – Management

      • Steve says:

        Why did YOU feel the need to respond? And failing that, why do YOU feel the need to trash everyone who has a different opinion to you?

        Welcome to the internet, and to the world which, I might add, thankfully does NOT revolve around YOUR opinion.

        So, to paraphrase, “Zip it” bud.

  5. Fletchguy says:

    Why would anyone give her a show? A loud mouth Im lesbian and you better be proud of me attitude just is annoying. her career dies what 15 years plus ago sometime riht after A League of their Own. Please go away and never come back you wack job.

  6. margie says:

    Not her again!!!!!!!!! She CANNOT have a show without controversy. It is in her DNA. Her mouth is just too big to be nice.

  7. jen says:

    She thrives on controversy. I couldn’t stand her views on 9/11 or much of anything else really. She’ll start out queen of nice…then it’ll be back to the old Rosie.

  8. Sivat says:

    I love Rosie and am really looking forward to this show. Can’t wait for her to unseat Ellen as the Queen Funny Lesbian of Daytime TV!

    • TV Gord says:

      There’s room for everyone. TV is a big playground.

    • tahitigirl says:

      I’d rather watch Ellen.
      Rosie’s show “…will feature one celeb guest per episode, provided “they have something to talk about and want to come play.” Other regular features will include an opening monologue, audience segments and “a fun game.”
      Yep. sounds like Ellen. But Ellen’s nice.

    • Steve says:

      The fact that you even consider her sexuality to be important just speaks volumes about her. Sexuality is as unimportant to a persons ability to do their job properly as their skin color. But then from what I’ve seen, you’re a very bored person who seems to enjoy posting crap on forums like this to anybody who has a differing opinion to your own.

  9. Ed says:

    I think a lot of people have a skewed vision of who she is. She has strong opinions, but she is also open to admit when she is wrong – which is refreshing. She & Howard Stern have become good friends and it was interesting to hear guys call her radio show talking about how much they used to hate her, but after hearing her on Stern, changed their minds.

  10. PDB says:

    “Other regular features will include an opening monologue, audience segments and “a fun game.”” – Welcome to the Ellen DeGeneres Show, oh sorry, the Rosie Show. My mistake.

    • TV Gord says:

      You must be young. Rosie did all of that before Ellen even considered doing a talk show.

      • Kim R says:

        I was going to say the same thing. If anything, Ellen patterned her show after The Rosie O’Donnell Show. I am looking forward to her coming back to TV. I, for one, enjoyed The View when she was on it (I had actually stopped watching until she was asked to join the panel) & I feel that it has gone completely downhill since she left. I watch The Talk…THAT I find informative & funny. Just my 2 cents! :)

  11. Jennifer says:

    Controversy? She makes it so interesting, though, and she gets people talking. It’s great to have her back!

  12. TV Gord says:

    I can’t wait for this show. I’m a little saddened that it will be based in Chicago and not New York, because I think she belongs in NYC and–as David F pointed out–around Broadway. However, she said on her Sirius/XM radio show that she will still work musicals into her show when she can.

    As for that Tom Selleck thing, Tom disingenuously acted like a wounded puppy after that interview when he KNEW she was going to bring it up (she talked about it the day before he was on, and it was a live show back then). He was a spokesperson for the NRA and she was perfectly within her rights to ask him about it, especially when it happened in the days and weeks after Columbine.

    If Selleck didn’t want to face those questions, he had plenty of opportunity to cancel his appearance, but he was more interested in promoting his movie to Rosie’s audience, so he made his decision.

    Rosie is going to be a terrific addition to the OWN lineup!

  13. Lana says:

    I start a year long maternity leave in October and I’m so glad Rosie will be back on tv to keep me company! :)

  14. Pam says:

    Not a huge fan of Rosie nor this type of show in general but came to say that picture of her is so cute!

  15. Barb says:

    Oh goodie – another talk show – NOT. Ughhh.

  16. Abe Froman says:

    Her first show was a success because she projected the image of being sweet and nice, “cutie patootie”, all that. Then we saw the real Rosie when it went off the air… nasty, mean, controversial. This new show will fail because of that.

  17. AJ says:

    Of course she doesn’t have to look for controversy, it magically finds her wherever she goes. She is obnoxious.

  18. tahina says:

    If what Oprah is looking for is someone who can stir controversy, she got the best person out there.

  19. Summer says:

    I’m going to cross my fingers and hope for the best. There was a time when she was really rather awesome.

  20. Squiggy says:

    Goody. Now sad, fat has beens [in or out of the closet] have their own network.

  21. Bobbi says:

    I read yesterday that this show was going to be aired at 7 central, 6 est. Seems to be an odd time of the day to show a talk show. Will people really have the time to sit down and watch at that hour?

  22. Jenny says:

    I loved her old talk-show, I love that she’s proud of who she is, and I’m happy that she seems to have decided there’s a time and place for controversy (a daytime talk show about current events and a personal blog, yes – a daytime talk show about comedy and women, less so). I’m excited for her. Also, she looks lovely in that photo.